It’s that time of year again, but don’t stress: To take the edge off present shopping, ARCHITECT has curated a selection of gift ideas for designers—budding and professional alike. We begin our list of 20 design-minded ideas with four ethically responsible and carbon-conscious suggestions. (For even more ideas, check out our past Gift Guides here. Pricing and availability may have changed since their original publication.)

Courtesy Arts and Designs Japan

Ukiyo-e Prints, Various ($300 for this print)
Consider antiques, including woodblock prints by Frank Lloyd Wright’s favorite artist, Utagawa Hiroshige (1797–1858), because they don’t add carbon to the atmosphere. Wright spent nearly a half-million dollars on ukiyo-e woodblock prints during his time in Japan, and often referred to Hiroshige as the greatest artist in the world. Astonishingly, an original impression from Hiroshige’s series The 53 Stations of the Tōkaidō can be had today for a few hundred dollars (Kusatsu – Travelers stopping at mochi shops shown).

Courtesy Educational Coin Co

Hadrian Coins (from $7)
If you weren’t the successful bidder for the 1,900-year-old Cobham Hall Hadrian, a full-length, larger-than-life-size marble statue that was up for auction at Christie’s in October, you could always settle for a portrait in miniature. Hundreds of coins minted during the 117–138 reign of the Roman architect-emperor are for sale from online numismatists. A weathered strike in a base metal starts at less than $10. More well-preserved casts in bronze and silver start around $60.

White Oak growing at Arbor Day Farm in Nebraska City, Neb.
Courtesy the Arbor Day Foundation White Oak growing at Arbor Day Farm in Nebraska City, Neb.

White Oak Tree ($13)
Providing food and shelter for black bears, deer, raccoons, squirrels, turkeys, and dozens of other bird species—as well as the creepy-crawlies they eat—can be as easy as planting a white oak tree in the yard. According to entomologist Douglas Tallamy, author of Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants (Timber Press, 2009), “Restoring large stands of oaks to suburbia would go a long way toward shoring up the future of our nation’s biodiversity.”

Little Sun Diamond (front and back)
Courtesy Little Sun Little Sun Diamond (front and back)

Little Sun Diamond, Little Sun ($30)
One of three solar-powered devices developed by artist Olafur Eliasson and engineer Frederik Ottesen, the Little Sun Diamond is a solar-powered lamp that’s small enough to stick in your pocket or wear around your neck on a lanyard. Five hours of exposure to daylight will provide as many hours of bright electric illumination. Proceeds from sales in more-developed countries underwrite sales in parts of Africa that lack reliable access to electricity at what the maker describes as “locally affordable prices.” To date, more than a half-million lamps have been distributed to people living off the grid.

Courtesy American Bird Products

Audubon Bird Call, American Bird Products ($8)
Do you speak sparrow? An underappreciated, all-American design classic, the Audubon Bird Call has been helping amateur and professional ornithologists communicate with feathered friends since Roger Eddy, the Yale University–educated founder of American Bird Products, invented the device shortly after World War II. Simply rotate the zinc handle within the birch casing to create friction that produces a noise imitating the calls of nature. The casing comes in a clear wood stain as well as the iconic red. Includes a capsule of rosin to keep the device chirpy. Handmade in the USA.

Courtesy Hay

Sowden Tin, Hay ($9 for one)
Anyone enthusiastic about the revival of Postmodern design should love the tins that Memphis Group co-founder George Sowden created for Hay, the Danish home goods company. The brightly colored containers topped by contrasting lids can be purchased individually or as a set of four.

Courtesy Fred Segal

RCo Foil Shower Curtain, R+Co ($65)
Finally, a shower curtain you can love. The design, by high-end vegan hair care collective R+Co, looks like crumpled aluminum foil, but in fact is 100% polyester (because love comes with a little guilt).

Courtesy Neue Galerie Design Shop

Wiener Werkstӓtte FabricBone, Neue Galerie Museum ($30)
For the dog who has everything, the Neue Galerie museum, in New York, offers a selection of chew toys in five Wiener Werkstätte fabric patterns by designers Josef Hoffmann, Dagobert Peche, and Heinz Weingarten. The toys are stuffed with organic cotton so you can be slightly less worried when Fido tries to eat the bone.

Courtesy Comme des Garçons

Concrete, Comme des Garçons ($165 for 80-milliliter bottle)
Die-hard Modernists will appreciate Concrete, a unisex eau de parfum from Comme des Garçons contained in an asymmetrical bottle coated in the construction material. That’s as far as the homage goes. Christian Astuguevieille, creative director of fragrances for the avant-garde Japanese fashion house with a French name, wanted the contents to contrast strongly with the packaging; he collaborated with perfumer Nicolas Beaulieu to create a scent with notes of sandalwood and rose oxide.

Christmas Pixie with Tree
Courtesy The Wooden Wagon Christmas Pixie with Tree

Painted Wooden Figurines, Wendt und Kühn (from $23)
Pioneering industrial designers Grete Wendt and Margarete Kühn founded their eponymous company in 1915. Their painted wooden figurines (Christmas pixie with tree shown), a Werkstätte update of local Saxon crafts, won a gold medal at the 1937 World’s Fair in Paris. Today, the streamlined modern forms are a hallmark of the traditional German Christmas and Easter holidays.

MA770 Wireless Speaker (front and back)
Courtesy Master & Dynamic MA770 Wireless Speaker (front and back)

MA770 Wireless Speaker, Master & Dynamic ($1,800)
For audiophiles who have been very, very good, the MA770 Wireless Speaker from Master & Dynamic will hit all the right notes. Measuring 14.5 inches by 18 inches by 9.5 inches, the monolithic form designed by David Adjaye, Hon. FAIA, is molded from a proprietary concrete composite and incorporates a 1.5-inch titanium dome tweeter and two 4-inch woven long-throw woofers. Available in gray or black.

Market Tote by Various Projects
Courtesy Maharam Market Tote by Various Projects

Market Tote, Maharam ($95 or $275)
Consumers looking for a snazzier alternative to the standard canvas or PEVA reusable shopping bag will appreciate the Market Tote by New York–based creative studio Various Projects for Maharam. The ingenious design appears woven, but is in fact cut from a single piece of leather. The tote comes in several colors and two sizes; the larger size (shown) includes a linen liner.

Courtesy Princeton Architectural Press

Architectural Classics Notecards, Princeton Architectural Press ($24.95)
Traditionalists have long appreciated Princeton Architectural Press’s sumptuous reprints of 18th-, 19th-, and early 20th-century monographs, with their distinctive black-and-gilt covers enclosing the works of Percier and Fontaine; Claude-Nicolas Ledoux; McKim, Mead & White; and other pre-modern masters. The publisher’s new Architectural Classics note cards include 20 images from the series; the architectural drawings are reproduced in black ink on heavy uncoated paper stock.

Courtesy Learning Resources

Primary Science Color Paddles, Learning Resources ($9.99)
Budding young designers will gain a new perspective on light with Primary Science Color Paddles. The translucent plastic paddles, in six colors, can be overlapped to create different hues. To further the fun, the surface of each paddle offers three textures: smooth, speckled, and gridded. Sold in kits of three six-piece sets.

Stendig Calendars

Stendig Calendar ($51)
Arguably the greatest calendar of all time, the Stendig Calendar was designed by Massimo Vignelli for furniture manufacturer Charles Stendig in 1966, and remains in production today. Make sure your intended recipient has sufficient wall space: The Italian-American designer’s paean to Helvetica type and the modernist grid measures 48" by 36".

Nanoleaf Canvas installed in sunroom
Courtesy Nanoleaf Nanoleaf Canvas installed in sunroom
Nanoleaf Canvas
Courtesy Nanoleaf Nanoleaf Canvas

Nanoleaf Canvas, Nanoleaf (from $119.99)
Tap your inner Dan Flavin with Nanoleaf Canvas. The interactive LED squares can be taped to the wall in basically any configuration you can imagine. Their color, intensity, and pattern can be controlled via a smartphone app, Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant, or the touch of your hand. The “Smarter” starter kit comes with four or nine squares.

Courtesy Novica

Twin Bedspread and Pillow Cases by Carmen Ruiz ($139.99 for the set)
For graphic punch, you can’t beat the work of Carmen Ruiz, a Zapotec weaver who sells her work through Novica, a National Geographic–affiliated, fair-trade online marketplace. Ruiz’s workshop in Oaxaca, Mexico, makes textiles—Beautiful Rainbow shown—the old-fashioned way: using the chicote, or wooden whip loom, which Spanish religious orders introduced to the New World during the colonial period. The colors come from plants such as cochineal cactus for red and orange, the pericon flower for yellow, and the huizache cactus for black.

Courtesy Public ‐ Supply

Softcover Notebook, Public - Supply (from $12)
If a sketchbook feels more like a cliché than a classic, try out the softcover notebooks from Public - Supply. They come in three sizes—3-1/2 inches square, 5 inches by 8 inches, and 7 inches by 10 inches—with covers in a range of colors. The paper comes finely ruled for writers or with a loose grid of dots for draftspeople. Public - Supply gives 25% of all profits to teachers in high-need areas for school projects.

Courtesy Hagenauer Family 

Cast Brass Animals, Walter Bosse for Werkstätte Hagenauer Wien (from $35)
Sometimes you’ve just got to go for kitsch. And you can’t get any kitschier—or more delightful—than the Austrian cast brass animals designed by Walter Bosse for Werkstätte Hagenauer Wien around the middle of the 20th century. Period originals can cost an arm and a leg, but reissues of the little pigs, horses, bears, and other animals are available at more reasonable prices from Modern Vienna Bronze (leaping Hagenauer horse shown).

Courtesy Lars Müller Publishers

Das Andere, Lars Müller Publishers (€35, approximately $49)
The consummate practitioner-theorist, Austrian architect Adolf Loos is remembered both for landmark built projects such as Villa Müller and for pivotal essays such as “Ornament and Crime,” which heralded Modernism’s form-follows-function ethic. Less well known is Das Andere (The Other), the journal Loos founded—and wrote in its entirety—in 1903. Only two issues came out: Both are reproduced in a facsimile edition edited by architectural historian and theorist Beatriz Colomina with curator and writer Kimberli Meyer, and published by Lars Müller.